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display this week when the president's pick to head the pentagon, former republican senator chuck hagel, came under fire from members of his own party during a very contentious confirmation hearing. >> name one person in your opinion who's intim nated by the israeli lobby in the united states senate. >> are we right or wrong? that's a pretty straightforward question. >> senator hagel, please answer the question i asked. today, do you think unilateral sanctions would be a bad idea? >> all this raising questions about how effective chuck hagel will be if confirmed as secretary of defense. earlier this weekend, i sat down for a rare joint interview with the top military leadership issue the outgoing secretary of defense leon panetta and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff general martin dempsey. >>> secretary panetta, welcome back to "meet the press." general dempsey, welcome. let me start with the man that is poised to take your place. he underwent on thursday a pretty tough round of questioning. he seemed to struggle with a lot of the answers. of course this is chuck hagel, the for
over the nomination of chuck hagel for defense secretary. it has now been delayed for another week, that vote. $8.5 billion of automatic spending cuts scheduled to take effect in two weeks' time if no agreement is reached. we have it all covered this morning and we want to start with a view from the white house. in washington, the job of white house chief of staff is known as the most powerful post in town and there is a new man occupying that seat of power and he is here with us this morning on "meet the press," his first appearance. but who he? how did he get here? denis mcdonough is one of 11 kids and qualification enough in a small town in minnesota. he was a high school football star. he cut his teeth in politics and working in the house for congressman lee hamilton and in the senate for majority leader tom daschle and later for barack obama. when he decided to make a run for the white house in 2008 he tapped mcdonough to be his foreign policy adviser to the campaign. the president announced him as his pick, mcdonough involved in every major foreign policy decision, including
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